Speed (running & exercise)

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by klyth » Tue Dec 13, 2011 3:33 pm

deusnoctum wrote: QFT. My little brother recently injured his back deadlifting 360 lbs. Fortunately it was apparently not a very serious or permanent injury, but he's been unable to work out at all for about six weeks now.
Deadlifts are awesome. No single exercise works as many muscles as deadlifts. It's a great way to get your heartrate up at the beginning of a workout, and it can give you a pretty awesome pump. Starting with something light, like two 45 plates on an olympic bar, is a good way to get a feel for it. The biggest thing to remember is, you aren't pulling the weight up with your upper body. You are holding it steady, and lifting with your legs. Your back should not arch at all.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Wed Jan 11, 2012 8:00 pm

For the lifters in the audience, is it normal to put a towel on the bench's head, walk away from a full rack for 5-10mins and expect to have reserved the bench for your return? I'm not up on weight-room protocols. I walked into an empty weight room to that situation. I waited around for a few minutes to see if anyone was coming back, but also was a bit impatient to get on with my workout. I unracked the weights and moved the towel, but was scolded upon the gorilla's return.

Okay, he was actually a pretty nice guy after I apologized. Wouldn't you appologize to a 300lbs gorilla beating his chest in front of you?
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by lotsofphil » Wed Jan 11, 2012 8:54 pm

tell me about this awesome signature of yours

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Wed Jan 11, 2012 9:06 pm

That's from my 21:56 5k in Dec. I'm blowing past this other guy in the last mile.

Whether he was actually a current member of HoD is unknown.

It wasn't my best race, as a slight injury was plaguing me, but still my PR at the time. After my 50mile week in late Dec, I think I should be able to knock another 20 seconds off that, at least. I'd like to hit 20:30 in 2012, but really I'm focusing on my March 18th marathon right now.

I like distance better than speed anyway.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Mon Jan 16, 2012 2:59 pm

It's kinda amazing what a good cardio base can do for a completely unrelated activity. I just hopped in the pool for 2,000 meters and only got out because someone annoyingly chose my lane to share (for the 3rd time in an hour). Otherwise, I could just keep plugging away.

First time in the pool in over 2 years.

In other news: 22.1 BMI! Woot! Want to get to 21.9 before my marathon (March 18th) -- shouldn't be a problem.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by Raccoon » Mon Jan 16, 2012 5:58 pm

NardoLoopa wrote:It's kinda amazing what a good cardio base can do for a completely unrelated activity. I just hopped in the pool for 2,000 meters and only got out because someone annoyingly chose my lane to share (for the 3rd time in an hour). Otherwise, I could just keep plugging away.

First time in the pool in over 2 years.

In other news: 22.1 BMI! Woot! Want to get to 21.9 before my marathon (March 18th) -- shouldn't be a problem.
I don't like swimming, but I find when I go biking, the limiting factor is leg fatigue, not cardio. In fact, biking is kind of annoying because I can't really get a satisfying cardio feeling.

Oh well. I thought you weren't trying to lose weight; aren't you going to look gaunt at 21.9? Then again, I'm down to 20.8 or something these days.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Mon Jan 16, 2012 10:00 pm

Raccoon wrote:I don't like swimming, but I find when I go biking, the limiting factor is leg fatigue, not cardio. In fact, biking is kind of annoying because I can't really get a satisfying cardio feeling.

Oh well. I thought you weren't trying to lose weight; aren't you going to look gaunt at 21.9? Then again, I'm down to 20.8 or something these days.
Yeah, leg fatigue is my issue with biking right now (though it's all on stationary bikes, which are basically dreadmills with wheels). I used to bike a LOT in my teens -- ah, so long ago.

So far there haven't been anything but thumbs up from Mrs. Loopa -- as long as I don't mention the weight numbers. She has an irrational reaction to anything lower than 23.2, but can't tell that I'm below that. Part of the difference this time is my fitness is a lot better, and my legs look huge (and apparently sexy).

As fro 21.9 -- I wouldn't mind dipping a little low just to make the run easier. But yeah, that wasn't the original plan.

BTW: it's amazing the strident reactions you get from just about everyone when you mention lower than average weight. It's like you're telling people you're going to try cocaine.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by Raccoon » Tue Jan 17, 2012 12:46 pm

NardoLoopa wrote:So far there haven't been anything but thumbs up from Mrs. Loopa -- as long as I don't mention the weight numbers. She has an irrational reaction to anything lower than 23.2, but can't tell that I'm below that.
Ha ha, pretty much the same story here, except that Mrs. Raccoon occasionally asks me how much I weigh.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by deusnoctum » Tue Jan 17, 2012 5:31 pm

NardoLoopa wrote:BTW: it's amazing the strident reactions you get from just about everyone when you mention lower than average weight. It's like you're telling people you're going to try cocaine.
There are a few pictures floating around of me in high school, when I had a BMI around 21.5. Every time my girlfriend happens upon one, she tells me I had an eating disorder.

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by Raccoon » Tue Jan 17, 2012 7:07 pm

deusnoctum wrote:
NardoLoopa wrote:BTW: it's amazing the strident reactions you get from just about everyone when you mention lower than average weight. It's like you're telling people you're going to try cocaine.
There are a few pictures floating around of me in high school, when I had a BMI around 21.5. Every time my girlfriend happens upon one, she tells me I had an eating disorder.
About ten years ago, my wife and I went back to L.A. to a big reunion of the law clerks over the years and the first judge I clerked for. After dinner, there was a slideshow with pictures over the years of the judge and clerks. When I came up, my wife blurted out, "You were so thin!" :roll: (Well, I was around BMI of 23.5 when she blurted that out, and 21.5 in the picture.) Of course, like I said, I'm now BMI of 20.8 or 20.7 . . . .

Also, I went to buy some new suits earlier in the month. The sales guy told me I needed "athletic build" suits, not the regular ones. :shock: :shock: :shock: I'm not sure when being a skinny guy became "athletic build," but the suits sure fit better than the ones I bought five years ago.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Tue Jan 17, 2012 8:09 pm

Have we as a nation become so acclimatized to technically obese that deviations on the low side are seen as dangerously abnormal? I know friends at work were surprised when we started talking BMI and found that a bunch of them weren't "overweight" but well into "obese". In the sedentary occupation of engineering this is certainly the middle-age average with the young Turks investing heavily in their paunch.

Why this social corralling to high-normal BMI? The cynic says jealousy or in encouraging you to eat more they are giving themselves the allowance to be fat. A more charitable interpretation is an evolutionary herd-like concern with deviations and the health of herd members -- a sickly thin person is more likely to carry disease [yes, I've been reading lots of evolutionary psychology books lately]. Or perhaps it is the media saturation of stories of anorexia and other eating disorders; you would think that would mostly apply to females, though. Maybe it's just annoyance with "temple of the body" and "addicted to gym" personalities; the herd is always concerned about extremists.

Mrs. Loopa is always very concerned that I'm "over-doing it". I do have a tendency to challenge myself and do stupid things that I pay for later (I can't lift my left arm right now because of the 1.5 mile dip in the pool). But I usually bounce back at her: why do you think so? She has never been an athlete, and doesn't grok the push through pain idea. Unfortunately, our sensible conversation about what she considered the dangers of "over-doing it" didn't amount to much more than a general concern for me.

A poet once called marriage a "pact of mutual decay". Maybe she's concerned I'm not holding up my end of the bargain. She certainly is hitting the gym more.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by Raccoon » Tue Jan 17, 2012 11:01 pm

NardoLoopa wrote:Have we as a nation become so acclimatized to technically obese that deviations on the low side are seen as dangerously abnormal? I know friends at work were surprised when we started talking BMI and found that a bunch of them weren't "overweight" but well into "obese". In the sedentary occupation of engineering this is certainly the middle-age average with the young Turks investing heavily in their paunch.
It's undeniable that, as a nation, we have a weight management problem. Just the fact that the obesity rate in this country has exploded in the last 20 years suggests that there are some behavioral pathologies going on. (Scary fact: in 2010, the least obese state was Colorado, with a 21% rate. Twenty years ago, that would have been the highest rate in the United States!)

Now, this is all based on BMI, and BMI has some clear limitations. If you judge professional athletes by it, you'd find that most rate as overweight if not obese, because muscle mass is dense and heavy. Obviously, there are pro athletes who are not only not obese but are incredibly fit with miniscule body fat percentages. Moreover, people are built differently, so even then, BMI might not tell us much about any specific individual, as the "running rhino" picture suggests.

That said, the national rate of obesity can't be chalked up to the limitations in BMI, unless somehow the proportion of pro athletes and others with dense builds/etc. has somehow increased dramatically, which seems highly unlikely.

On the other hand, we are continuously bombarded with images of rail-thin models and actors, which no doubt sets up unrealistic body images, especially for younger women and girls. It's kind of weird that people like you (Nardo) and me, with BMIs in the lower range of normal, seem to be a shrinking lot, with a small but highly visible group in the underweight range, and then more than half in the overweight (>25) or obese (>30) range.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Sat Jan 21, 2012 5:35 pm

getting a cold sucks while training. Last week I almost hit 50mi. This week, I'll be lucky with 8. I've had a fever, stuffed nose and sore throat since Tuesday. Doc just cleared me to run today (inside only) up to 3miles. So I'm stuck sharing the mill with all the New Year Resolutioneers who joined my gym on Jan 1.

Hopefully, it won't hurt me too bad next week and I can get back up into the 40s.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by Raccoon » Sat Jan 21, 2012 11:36 pm

NardoLoopa wrote:getting a cold sucks while training. Last week I almost hit 50mi. This week, I'll be lucky with 8. I've had a fever, stuffed nose and sore throat since Tuesday. Doc just cleared me to run today (inside only) up to 3miles. So I'm stuck sharing the mill with all the New Year Resolutioneers who joined my gym on Jan 1.

Hopefully, it won't hurt me too bad next week and I can get back up into the 40s.
Aw, Nardo, get better soon! I was wondering what happened to the prodigious point totals you were racking up on Fitocracy.

You just need to adjust your attitude about the treadmill. I see the aesthetic advantages of outdoor running, but my body loves how much better it feels after treadmill running. . . .
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Sun Jan 22, 2012 8:50 am

Raccoon wrote:You just need to adjust your attitude about the treadmill.
I'm sure that by giving sycophantic students a practiced disapproving glare you can lock down a treadmill for two hours at a time. Unfortunately, by-laws of my paid membership and internalized scolding from my kindergarten teacher, make me obey the "30 min" share rule at the gym. Which means that unless I want to do speed work without a proper warm-up, I'm only getting 3-4miles in at a time.

I might try to fool both the gym nazis and Mrs. Morrison by throwing a towel over the console and keeping track with R2-D2 (my garmin).

It's 28F and slushy outside today. While I don't mind 28F, I do hate slushy. Though, I'm retiring my first set of running shoes at 450miles; now I have some rainy day shoes!

Odd side note: my left knee has been bothering me since Nov (ironically since my right knee problem solved itself). I wore the new shoes one day (9mi) two weeks ago and the after the next run (10mi with the old shoes) the knee problem almost vanished. I've been running on the old shoes since (27mi total) and knee hasn't bothered me. Very odd. Of course, I was just about to change shoes right when the knee fixed itself -- and would have forever attributed it to the new shoes (and thus become a lifelong proselytizer of the 400mi shoe replacement marketing campaign). Of course, it has also been below freezing outside, so maybe it's just my knee is too cold to feel bad.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by Raccoon » Sun Jan 22, 2012 6:21 pm

NardoLoopa wrote:I'm sure that by giving sycophantic students a practiced disapproving glare you can lock down a treadmill for two hours at a time. Unfortunately, by-laws of my paid membership and internalized scolding from my kindergarten teacher, make me obey the "30 min" share rule at the gym.
LOL. Except I don't use the gym at the college. It's got lots of hours blocked off for "athletes only," which makes it less than ideal.

The clubhouse gym has a "30 minutes if someone is waiting" rule. Most of the time, there's at least one open treadmill. When all the treadmills are being used (including one by me), someone else always finishes before 30 more minutes have elapsed. I'll admit that's not the only way to interpret the rule -- indeed, perhaps not even the best way -- but there you go.

Besides, I rarely lock it down for more than an hour.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by lotsofphil » Mon Jan 23, 2012 3:30 pm

Was in a good place after thanksgiving, then 5 weeks of travel with minimal running broke my nascent habit. Today's run felt "choppy". Opposite of smooth.

I used to play a similar treadmill game to Raccoon. I also had the ability to go at offpeak hours, though. It might help to give a heads up to the gym staff. They likely won't come down to harshly on you if they know you're trying to be polite about your HOGGING THE TREADMILL :-P

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Mon Jan 23, 2012 6:05 pm

lotsofphil wrote:They likely won't come down to harshly on you if they know you're trying to be polite about your HOGGING THE TREADMILL :-P
"Uhm, yeah. Sorry. I'm doing my LSD today; do you mind if I reserve this treadmill for the next three hours?" Maybe if I can schedule it around a shift change I stand a better chance.

Congrats on getting back to it, LoP. The road asks after you all the time.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by lotsofphil » Wed Feb 01, 2012 10:16 am

26 miles last week. Choppy feeling is mostly gone. Now just working on fitness, I guess. Hopefully I can do another 2 or 3 weeks like the last one.

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Wed Feb 01, 2012 11:44 pm

w00t! Go, LoP!

I hit my first of many 2012 goals: 50miles in a week last week.
Unfortunately, this week isn't going too swell: road injury after tripping on some junk in the road at night in NJ. That and travelling all day = only 5mi so far this week.

Also, talked to a friend in NJ who used to do marathons. Ran his first in 3:00.28. :shock: to qualify for Boston. Then didn't train and ran Boston in 3:00.32. :shock: :shock: This was in his early 30s, of course.

Still, wow.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Sat Feb 11, 2012 5:27 pm

5k race today: 21:34 (PR -0:25). 6:49, 6:39, 7:15 splits. The hills and mud at the end of the course zapped me. But how can I argue with a new PR?

I'm wondering how I'm going to take it when every race isn't a new PR. Hopefully, they'll still be age-adjusted PRs.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by lotsofphil » Sun Feb 12, 2012 10:36 am

NardoLoopa wrote:I'm wondering how I'm going to take it when every race isn't a new PR. Hopefully, they'll still be age-adjusted PRs.
Hehe, I remember those times. My streak was broken when the course turned out to be 14 miles instead of 13.1. I bonked hideously and had a 9 minute last mile or something. Don't remember specifics, but when I found out I still had "the streak" I was a broken man, to tired to care :)

In other news, 25.5 miles last week, 30 this week. The latter includes an 11 miler, my longest run in years (probably around 5).

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Sun Feb 12, 2012 6:33 pm

lotsofphil wrote:In other news, 25.5 miles last week, 30 this week. The latter includes an 11 miler, my longest run in years (probably around 5).
WTG, LoP! Glad to hear you're back into it.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Sun Feb 26, 2012 7:08 pm

I finally hit the part of this training that I can really enjoy: Intervals & Tempo runs; the "sharpening" part. I say "enjoy" because up until now everyone's been admonishing me for going too fast -- they're Easy runs, they say. It was a bit frustrating, to be honest. You'd do some workout and not have that "wow, that was tough" feeling. Long runs, however, were pretty brutal when I hit new distance PRs.

Intervals are what I guess my mind is used to: run a "short" distance (like 1mi) at a 5k pace with a 60sec jog in between for six times total. Now, that's tough.

My mileage is in the mid 60s for the past 3 weeks. I've come so far, I have no idea what I'm really capable of and the Marathon is 3weeks away. So, I asked the guys at RunningAhead to review my log and let me know what they thought I should shoot for. I was thinking sub 4:00 and if I can hit 3:45, then super-awesome(tm). They think the training says I'm capable of 3:30. :shock:

So, today I worked in a little test run: 12mi(8:00), 4mi(7:45), 4mi(8:00) with a 2mi(9:00) warmup (22mi total). I figured that should simulate a race w/o the race.

Well, I nailed it. Went out to celebrate by buying some "racing" shoes.

And now the dreaded Taper.

So, in Summary: Sept 15th I couldn't run 3mi without walking, Feb 26th I'm eyeballing a 3:30 marathon. Amazing what 800miles will do.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by Raccoon » Sun Feb 26, 2012 11:13 pm

NardoLoopa wrote:So, in Summary: Sept 15th I couldn't run 3mi without walking, Feb 26th I'm eyeballing a 3:30 marathon. Amazing what 800miles will do.
Awesome!!! And do I get credit for inspiring this magnificent accomplishment? :lol:
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Mon Feb 27, 2012 7:25 am

Raccoon wrote:Awesome!!! And do I get credit for inspiring this magnificent accomplishment? :lol:
You and the 20yo girl who remarked, "oh, you played sports in school? You don't look like an athlete."

I do now.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by lotsofphil » Mon Feb 27, 2012 11:32 am

Nardo, I ran my marathon in 3:28, so I'd be curious to see your training. When's the marathon?

edit: waiiit a minute, you just ran 20 miles at 8:00 pace? you're in excellent shape for 3:30. just take care of yourself

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Sun Mar 11, 2012 4:51 pm

Okay, 1 week to go until my Marathon.

I suspect it's fashionable for runners to complain about the taper: "Oh, I can only run 50 miles this week; I feel like shit." So I was ready to feel relaxed and super-charged and brimming with speed like a colt waiting for the starting gun. But instead, I'm finding the taper to actually be a little tough. There's nothing to hang your hat on and say "wow, that was a great workout; I'm totally ready for this." Instead, it's a bunch of walks in the park. So you end up worrying a bit about performance. That wouldn't be the case if these easy runs were real cake-walks. Instead, they sometimes feel like work. And that makes you think "I feel like crap for 5miles? 26 is going to kill me!"

Compound this with my blister problem. Went into the taper with a few blisters because of running a half-marathon then playing racquetball in the same cotton socks. Then the blisters got blister, and my toes squished in the toe-box. Now 7 of my 10 toes have blisters. Only two are really troubling me right now. I hope they cool-it before next Sunday. Unfortunately, they just don't get time to heal because of all the running.

Because I was feeling like crap, I needed something to feel good about. So I did a 1mi time-trial on something resembling kinda flat. 5:50. So 1:02 mins slower than my HS PR. I doubt I'll ever see the other side of 5min again, but it's nice to be in the same zip-code.

Initial marathon pace is going to be 7:55 for at least half of it. Then I'll see where it goes from there. There's so much that can go wrong; I'm pretty excited.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by Raccoon » Sun Mar 11, 2012 5:19 pm

Woo hoo, go Nardo!!

I too will be running a race next Saturday, but in my case, just a 5K. On a flat course, not the hill-a-thon on a volcano that was my last race.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by lotsofphil » Mon Mar 12, 2012 9:14 am

Good luck Nardo. I'll be looking at all runners across all marathons to stalk you appropriately.

As for blisters, maybe the little pain of blisters will let you power through the big pain of marathon a little better. (I won't mention the convergence of the big pain of blisters on blisters on blisters and the big pain of oh god i ran a marathon yesterday). Also, if you have anything important to say to your toenails, you might want to do it before the race :)

I hope you're pumped up now!

On my end, 22 miles last week. Working back into it from a 1-2 week layoff from illness and travel.

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Wed Mar 14, 2012 3:19 pm

Taper anxiety: It's expected to be 67F on Sunday. . . and "foggy" (read: humid).

http://fellrnr.com/wiki/Impact_of_Heat_ ... erformance

40f 50f 60f 70f
3:30:00 3:37:21 (4%) 3:44:42 (9%) 3:52:03 (13%)

Not exactly what I was hoping for.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Sun Mar 18, 2012 7:04 pm

3:32

I made some tactical errors. I was chasing the 3:23 pace group with 7:45s until mile 17, then a few sub 8:00s. But at mile 21 I lost it with 9:31 then 8:18, 9:13, 9:10, 8:37. I'd say that's "hitting the wall". I finished with the gas tank on E. I had nothing left. I found my limit, which was the most important goal for me in this thing. I could not have run it any faster (at least in the way that I did).

I kept with the 3:25s mostly because they were a windshield. But it was not my pace. 7:55 was my target pace. Unfortunately, there was no 3:30 group. Only a 3:35 group i was betting on beating.

After crossing the line I had an IQ of around 70. I couldn't brain for the life of me. All resources were focused on the Ow.

My buddy, who got me into this (besides Rac) is my height, weight and about 7 years younger turned in a 4:15 for his second marathon.

couch + 6 months, 900miles = 3:32.

I'm pretty happy with it. 3:29:59 would have had me fist-pumping from a brand-new coffin.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by lotsofphil » Sun Mar 18, 2012 7:24 pm

Well done! Congratulations!

Will you ever run another?

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Sun Mar 18, 2012 7:32 pm

lotsofphil wrote:Will you ever run another?
Kinda hard to qualify for Boston w/o running a few more. ;)

And the cliche is completely true: it's a mental game after 20 -- I wanted to quit many times.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by Raccoon » Sun Mar 18, 2012 7:39 pm

Congrats!
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by deusnoctum » Sun Mar 18, 2012 10:32 pm

While I have a lot of respect for anyone who can run a whole marathon, doing your first one in 3:30 is even more impressive. That's pretty awesome; congratulations!

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Sat Mar 24, 2012 5:53 pm

Recovery week has been interesting. I'm pretty sure I'm losing a toe-nail. It's floating under a blood blister. I figure I'll just let it work itself out.

I've been swimming to keep my cardio base, but let my joints etc rest from the running regiment. Did 60 laps (3km) on Monday, 100laps (5km) on Thursday and 30laps (1.5km) today before the gym closed. To me it's amazing that my cardio base transfers to swimming. I used to be a competitive swimmer 20years ago, so that might have something to do with it. However, the cardio benefit does not translate to the stationary bike. Spent 30mins going 8miles and hated it the whole way. That strikes me as pretty odd.

Well, next week I get to start running again. Signed up for a 10miler on Saturday -- though I won't "race" it. It will be very nice to get back into the swing of things.

In a month I need to start planning my PR/BQ assault in the Fall. The Hanson training plan looks inviting -- not for the lower miles, but for the practice of the last 6.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by lotsofphil » Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:40 am

Careful on swimming. I injured my foot on a flip turn when swimming after my marathon. (Not by doing anything dumb either like smacking it on the deck :-P just the foot was worn out from the race).

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by caprosmaster » Mon Mar 26, 2012 2:10 am

Hey there AfHers!

Firstly, I'm very impressed by your times Nardo! Crazy man! I'm running my 1st half on Sunday, and am awed by your times :P Granted, I haven't been training super hard., This brings me onto my next question - cramps. I often get cramps in my calves a few days after a tough training session, and they often come back morning after morning, leaving my muscles super tense, I just can't run on them. Has anyone else here experienced this? If so, did you find a way around it? Not being able to run more than 100m without pain kinda makes me nervous in the week leading up to my event :s

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Mon Mar 26, 2012 6:42 am

Thanks.

Regarding cramps, first I'd recommend getting a electrolyte replacement for after/during runs. Nuun is great -- zero calorie. Or maybe some extra salt in your post-workout diet. (You are hydrating, right?).

But the best bet is probably going to be a foam roller. These $20 torture devices work miracles. You basically use your bodyweight to crush your muscles into relaxing. Works on calves, hams and quads. A bowling pin would do the same.

Also, make sure you're stretching AFTER your workouts. Just 10-15mins. This helps for the following day.

Since you mentioned calves, are you by chance a fore-foot striker? Or maybe trying vibrams?

Good luck in the Half!
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by caprosmaster » Mon Mar 26, 2012 11:11 am

Hey,

That's a good suggestion, hadn't thought of electrolytes. I do hydrate well after my runs, always have a bottle of water next to me after - I don't really drink during.
I'm actually a heel striker, as bad as I know it is, I just cannot shake it for the life of me. Getting myself a sports massage this week, hopefully might help :P Plan on probably just running it with my friends who are doing it - my time will be nowhere near what I had planned to do it in, but I know I'm capable of that, as I did a race distance run a few weeks back. Thanks for the advice, this thread has been a gold mine of info in my lurking!

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by Raccoon » Mon Apr 02, 2012 11:15 am

Well, I had set March goals of running 100+ miles in the month and finishing a 5K in under 22:30. As of March 30th, I had easily met the first goal (116 miles), but I missed badly on the second one, running a 5K in 23:24 in the middle of the month. I'm still not sure what happened there. But due to a confluence of events, like maybe Mrs. Raccoon forgetting her edict that I run only one race a month, I ran again on the 31st. And on a rainy morning with puddles of water on the course, I finished in 22:24. Woo hoo!
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by lotsofphil » Mon Apr 02, 2012 11:40 am

nice job, racc :)

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Mon Apr 02, 2012 8:09 pm

Yeah, baby! Keep it up!
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Tue Apr 03, 2012 9:22 pm

Four people have contacted me in PM/Kmail asking general questions about running and how to improve what they were doing. Since there may be others out there, I thought I'd post some general advice on how to get started and answer the FAQs:

Pace, how do I know my pace? - A minimum you need a time-piece. Digital watch? You can mark out miles in your car if you do the same route all the time. Or, if you can wait until after your run, you can plot your path on http://www.runkeeper.com or http://www.dailymile.com. Both have Google map integrations. If you have an iPhone or similar there are free apps at these sites that will GPS record your path and give you splits (pace per last mile). I use a GPS watch (because I don't own a cellphone -- smart or otherwise).

I beat my yesterday's time at 3miles by 10seconds - First, congrats. Second, you're doing it wrong. Don't race your training. If you want to get better the only time you should PR is a race. Instead, find a training plan you like and stick to it. Running how you feel, or racing your training is a very good way to get injured.

Injury?! What's that - probably the biggest concern of most runners is injury. It's too common. Some is easily avoidable. If you're starting out, add no more than 2miles or 10% to your weekly mileage each week. If you are really just starting out and have trouble running 2miles, consider monitoring your time running instead of your distance. That way you won't push too hard.

What should I do first? - build a mileage base. Just do easy runs until you hit your goal mileage per week -- which should be determined by what kind of races you like (5k 20mpw, half-marathon 30mpw).

easy? - an easy run is one where you can keep a conversation going w/o gasping for breath. All your runs should be like this until you follow a plan.

Where can I get a plan? - There are lots on the net. I cribbed mine from RunKeeper's FitnessClasses page. First I started on the Sub-4hr Marathon. I found that too easy, so I migrated to the sub-3:45. Then I was struck by unfettered ambition and ended with the sub-3:30 plan. There are plans for "Couch to 5k" (C25K) to Half marathon to Marathon. The C25K is great if you are just getting off the couch.

How fast am I? or How fast should I run my first 5k? - running a 5k is a great first step to see how fit you are. Best thing to do is just toe the starting line and run -- make all the n00b mistakes. And use it as your baseline. I ran my first in 26min and walked 1/3 of it. After just two months training I was down to 23mins and no walking. After you get a 5k time use this site: http://www.mcmillanrunning.com/index.ph ... calculator to extrapolate to other times. I basically obsessed over this site before my marathon.

Good Websites?
Social Re-enforcement - It's amazing how much more you run, and better you feel about it when you have other runners encouraging you and admonishing you for being lazy. http://www.dailymile.com: like twitter, but for runners. Very social. http://www.runkeeper.com: a bit less social. Better for a small group of friends. But same idea. http://www.fitocracy.com: fitness+RPG+twitter. Hyper social. There is an AFH group. It's lots of fun and integrates with RK.

Serious Runnering Log - if you're really serious about your training, you should check out http://www.runningAHEAD.com. It isn't a social-networking site. But the forum is very knowledgeable, and the logging/graphing features are excellent (though not sexy). If you are an MS-Windows user you might check out http://www.zonefivesoftware.com/sporttracks/ it's a program that does a heck of a log of logging and data gathering for you.

If you have other questions please feel free to Kmail me, or post here so others can benefit from the Q&A. Either way, it's always nice to help new runners.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by big_mara » Thu Apr 05, 2012 5:35 pm

Thanks, Nardo!

Have you tried using the Nike+ app? I downloaded it and have been using it recently. I have been running random routes, setting distance rather than time goals. I was wondering if you have heard good things about it. From my experiences it is nice because it tells you your pace, total distance, and rough estimate of calories burned. I think it was $2, fwiw.

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Thu Apr 05, 2012 9:05 pm

I actually don't own a smartphone . . . or a cellphone. So, I just bought a Garmin 610 watch. I love it.

Runkeeper has an app that people seem to like. RunningAhead has some app -- but I don't think it's currently being maintained. I think even DailyMile has one. Not really sure how to compare them -- there's only so much info you can get off a GPS smartphone. Integration with a log/socialnetwork is probably the difference.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by lotsofphil » Fri Apr 06, 2012 9:38 am

I don't think exact distance is too important if you're not running intervals. Just get a feel for your jogging pace and do that times however many miles. I jog at 8:30/mile, so 5 miles = 42:30. If you don't have any idea on your pace, measure it somehow (on a track, road, whatever) then just be satisfied with that.

Full disclosure: One of the things I like about running is that it is simple. I am an unabashed Luddite. My running tech consists of shoes and the cheapest walmart stopwatch I can find.

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Fri Apr 06, 2012 10:19 am

Also, for running apps: those with a smarthphone might like this: https://www.zombiesrungame.com/
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by deusnoctum » Fri Apr 06, 2012 11:43 am

NardoLoopa wrote:Also, for running apps: those with a smarthphone might like this: https://www.zombiesrungame.com/
Having paid for Zombies Run and used it a few times, I can say it is entertaining but somewhat incomplete. Only in the last update did it actually start tracking your runs, and runkeeper integration is missing (I have been using it on the treadmill). That said, it has encouraged me to run much further than I otherwise would--I run about half again as long so I can hear more storyline and collect more phat loot. Once it has runkeeper integration I think it will be a much more powerful app, but until then it's basically eight bucks for a radio drama. That said, I would still recommend it.

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by big_mara » Sat Apr 07, 2012 8:03 pm

For the curious, I tested the accuracy of the Nike+ application on a track today. After a 4-mile run it clocked 4.03 miles, which pleased me a lot. So for those of you living in the 21st century I'd recommend checking it out.

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by lotsofphil » Sun Apr 08, 2012 8:03 pm

big_mara wrote:So for those of you living in the 21st century I'd recommend checking it out.
Oi!

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by BC_Goldman » Mon Apr 09, 2012 11:51 am

I've been trying to get back into running/jogging after being a couch potato for about 2 years. My goal was to get back to 1.5 mile routes that I had been doing for a few months back then. First two times I made about .5 to .75 miles before needing to stop. 3rd time I made the whole 1.5 and 4th time I made it again and even had the energy to speed up while climbing the last incline.

All I have for equipment is a pair of Vibrams (those individually toed shoes). I don't have any training in proper techniques so I just kinda go. I did figure out on run 3 that slowing my pace let me last significantly longer but I have a hard time doing it. I even have a fast natural walking pace.

I'm thinking about trying to bump up to a 5k in the near future. All I have to do is run my route twice and maybe take a lap around the parking lot.

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Mon Apr 09, 2012 7:45 pm

BC_Goldman wrote:All I have for equipment is a pair of Vibrams (those individually toed shoes). I don't have any training in proper techniques so I just kinda go.
Sounds like a great start, BC! Just remember, with the Vibrams, if you are heel-striking you're going to really f-up your knees. I mean badly. With those shoes you need to be landing on your forefoot, or possibly midfoot.

In other news, I just hit 1,000 miles since I started running in Sept.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by big_mara » Mon Apr 09, 2012 8:58 pm

NardoLoopa wrote: In other news, I just hit 1,000 miles since I started running in Sept.
That's ridiculous. I don't think I've driven my car 1,000 miles since September. Congrats!

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by BC_Goldman » Tue Apr 10, 2012 8:29 am

I think I'm a midfoot striker in that my feet are usually flat when I stride. When I was running in regular sneakers before, I was making a concentrated effort to hit with the front of my feet but I think I was overdoing it and it took a lot more energy to maintain. I'd heard that heel strike was bad for the knees so I've been trying to make sure that I avoid it.

Also, I just remapped my route and it is supposedly 1.55 miles which means I just have to run it twice for a 5k. I think I'll start the 2nd lap next time and see how I can do. Need to dig out my old phone which can serve as a music player and stopwatch.

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by BC_Goldman » Tue Apr 10, 2012 7:09 pm

Whee! I'm happy to announce that I made the whole 5k without stopping (other than a couple seconds so I could see to push the 'lap' button on my phone). Did it in 28:02. Split was 13:16 for the first half and 14:46 for the second half. Not particularly good but I'm more happy that I made it through in one shot. This is my 5th run/jog since starting up again and I went from 3/4mile and wanting to puke to doing a 5k.

I'm wondering how much better I could do on flat ground. I'm going on what I would consider slight hills. Probably up and down 15' over several places.

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by Eigenbasis » Tue Apr 10, 2012 7:26 pm

I have severely flat feet. Should I be adapting to be a heel-striker or a forefoot-striker? I was on the treadmill the other day and I was THWAP THWAP THWAPping away as my shoe struck the track dead-on and I hated it.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Tue Apr 10, 2012 7:50 pm

Eigenbasis wrote:I have severely flat feet. Should I be adapting to be a heel-striker or a forefoot-striker? I was on the treadmill the other day and I was THWAP THWAP THWAPping away as my shoe struck the track dead-on and I hated it.
Sounds like you're a mid-foot striker. Nothing particularly wrong with that. But the clear sign is the "thwap". If you really hate it for some reason, you can always move to forefoot. Nobody "tries to be" a heel-striker.

BC: Wow, that's great. Just for a frame of reference. My first 5K was around 26mins in Sept before I started training. Now it's 21:30. Just a little training can make a huge difference.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by Eigenbasis » Tue Apr 10, 2012 10:23 pm

But the thwap sound is really annoying...

Wasn't sure if mid-foot striking was okay for one who is flat footed.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Wed Apr 11, 2012 7:34 am

Eigenbasis wrote:But the thwap sound is really annoying...

Wasn't sure if mid-foot striking was okay for one who is flat footed.
Sorry, I'm out of my depth on that question. I haven't read a lot about flat-footers or mid-foot striking. Probably best to ask at a good running shop, or in a good running forum (RunningAHEAD.com people are very knowledgeable).

In my last 10miler there was a woman running barefoot with a gross thwap. It seemed odd, but she felt she knew what she was doing. Then there was another guy running barefoot -- sounded like a ninja.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by big_mara » Sat Apr 21, 2012 12:19 pm

Seems pretty obvious, but I thought y'all might be interested in this anyway: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/22/magaz ... brain.html

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Thu Apr 26, 2012 5:56 am

I won the NY Lottery!

Well, the NYC Marathon lottery. So, my second marathon will be Nov 4th, 2012 in NYC with a mob of other people trucking through the 5 Neighborhoods. Good thing too, they dropped the guaranteed entry times for 2013. Men 40-45 were 3:10 last year (achievable for me in 2013) to 2:50 :shock: (achievable for me in my next life).

Not sure yet what I'll do with my Philly entry. The race is 2 weeks after NYC. I'll see if I can defer.
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by thacon » Thu Apr 26, 2012 6:31 am

Congrats, Nardo! You should run it in costume.

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by lotsofphil » Thu Apr 26, 2012 9:34 am

It is an awesome race. Good luck :)

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by deusnoctum » Thu Apr 26, 2012 10:50 am

Huh, I didn't realize the Philadelphia marathon was so late--for some reason I thought it was early September. I'm strongly considering entering, since I'd have seven months to train.

Unfortunately, race rules state no refunds or transfers, otherwise I'd be willing to buy it from you. Instead, I'll race you to the Liberty Bell :-P

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by Raccoon » Sun Apr 29, 2012 8:18 pm

Ran my 5K race yesterday in 22:19, good for 5th overall out of 97, and 1st in my age group (out of 7). The age group was unusually noncompetitive, since 40-49 year old guys tend to do quite well in these races. But the next fastest person in the age group -- a woman -- was over 3 minutes slower -- and the next fastest guy was almost 5 minutes behind me.

This was a PR for me, but by just 5 seconds. I think it's a slightly slower course than the one I set my previous PR on, as this one has more turnarounds and a slightly higher hill profile.

As an added bonus, the county sheriff ran the race. There's nothing like running from the law to spur you to a PR! (I beat him.)
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by deusnoctum » Sun Apr 29, 2012 10:28 pm

Raccoon wrote:As an added bonus, the county sheriff ran the race. There's nothing like running from the law to spur you to a PR! (I beat him.)
I guess his race is run
Raccoon fought the law and he won

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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by Raccoon » Sun Apr 29, 2012 11:01 pm

deusnoctum wrote:I guess his race is run
Raccoon fought the law and he won
Well, that's usually what happens when the law tangles with lawyers! :lol:
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Re: Speed (running & exercise)

Post by NardoLoopa » Mon Apr 30, 2012 7:07 am

Raccoon wrote:Ran my 5K race yesterday in 22:19, good for 5th overall out of 97, and 1st in my age group (out of 7). The age group was unusually noncompetitive, since 40-49 year old guys tend to do quite well in these races.
Wow, what a joy! Winning your age group is great, as well as the PR.

The 40-49 group regularly occupies the top-10 of races around here, with the 20-29yos next (college athletes), then finally the 30-39s. The 40-49 group is really hard core.
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